Undoing Partition: Pakistan’s Military Economy and the Reintegration of South Asia

Columbia University’s Journal of International Affairs published a paper of mine on Pakistan. Entitled “Undoing Partition: Pakistan’s Military Economy and the Reintegration of South Asia,” the paper expands upon an argument made in the World Politics Review, and is available on the JIA website here, and in pdf here. An abstract is available below.

ABSTRACT: While America’s goals in the AfPak region have focused on eliminating Al Qaeda, organizations like Pakistan-based Lashkar-e-Taiba are ready to step into the breach. Yet Islamist militants will prevail in AfPak so long as America remains dependent on Pakistan for access to Central Asia; Pakistan makes use of this dependence to secure military aid, backing militants whose existence in turn ensures American engagement in the region and continued American dependence on Pakistan.

But the main reason that Pakistan has nurtured Islamist militants is Islamabad’s insecurity over its unbalanced relationship with India. This insecurity accounts for the military’s influence over Pakistani decision-making, a role guaranteed by its pervasive control of Pakistan’s economy that began at partition. Instead of aggravating the problem with more military aid, Washington should encourage structural change (1) in the Pakistani economy, by reintegrating the region and economically undoing the partition of the subcontinent; and (2) in its relations with Pakistan by opening the Chabahar-Afghanistan route in eastern Iran, thus reducing its dependence on Pakistan.

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This entry was posted in Governance, India, Pakistan, South Asia, Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Undoing Partition: Pakistan’s Military Economy and the Reintegration of South Asia

  1. Chirag Chhatriwala says:

    Some of the things you’ve mentioned here are quite remarkable and I was fortunate enough to come across your paper on the Columbia website.
    I can only hope that someone in the right jurisdiction at Washington reads your proposal and gets a wake up call…
    Thank you for this…

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